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Fujifilm X-M1 versus Fujifilm X-A3

The Fujifilm X-M1 and the Fujifilm X-A3 are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in June 2013 and August 2016. Both the X-M1 and the X-A3 are mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras that are equipped with an APS-C sensor. The X-M1 has a resolution of 16 megapixel, whereas the X-A3 provides 24 MP. Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their size, their sensors, their features, and their reception by expert reviewers.

Body comparison: Fujifilm X-M1 vs Fujifilm X-A3

The physical size and weight of the Fujifilm X-M1 and the Fujifilm X-A3 are illustrated in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All width, height and depth measures are rounded to the nearest millimeter. If you prefer, you can also use the toggle button to switch to a comparison in percentage terms (in this case, the camera on the left side – the X-M1 – represents the basis for the calculations across all the size and weight measures).

Compare Fujifilm X-M1 vs Fujifilm X-A3
Compare X-M1 versus X-A3 top
Compare X-M1 and X-A3 rear

In this particular case, the Fujifilm X-M1 and the Fujifilm X-A3 have exactly the same width and height, and, thus, have identically-sized bodies. However, the X-A3 is slightly heavier (3 percent) than the X-M1. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the X-M1 nor the X-A3 are weather-sealed.

The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete since they do not consider the interchangeable lenses that both of these cameras require. In this particular case, both cameras feature the same lens mount, so that they can use the same lenses. You can find an overview of suitable optics in the Fujinon X Lens Catalog. Mirrorless cameras, such as the two under consideration, have the additional advantage of having a short flange to focal plane distance, which makes it possible to mount many lenses from other systems onto the camera via adapters.

Concerning battery life, the X-M1 gets 350 shots out of its NP-W126 battery, while the X-A3 can take 410 images on a single charge of its NP-W126S power pack.

The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the two cameras alongside a broader set of comparators. In case you want to display and compare another camera duo, just click on the right or left arrow next to the camera that you would like to inspect. Alternatively, you can also use the CAM-parator to select your camera combination among a larger number of options.

Camera Body Specifications
  Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life
(CIPA)
Weather
Sealing
(yes/no)
Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
Fujifilm X-M1» 4.6 in 2.6 in 1.5 in 11.6 oz 350 n Jun 2013 699- i Fujifilm X-M1
Fujifilm X-A3« 4.6 in 2.6 in 1.6 in 12.0 oz 410 n Aug 2016 399- i Fujifilm X-A3
Fujifilm X-E3« » 4.8 in 2.9 in 1.7 in 11.9 oz 350 n Sep 2017 899 i i Fujifilm X-E3
Fujifilm X-T20« » 4.6 in 3.3 in 1.6 in 13.5 oz 350 n Jan 2017 899 i i Fujifilm X-T20
Fujifilm X-A10« » 4.6 in 2.6 in 1.6 in 11.7 oz 410 n Dec 2016 399- i Fujifilm X-A10
Fujifilm X-E2S« » 5.1 in 3.0 in 1.5 in 12.3 oz 350 n Jan 2016 699- i Fujifilm X-E2S
Fujifilm X-A2« » 4.6 in 2.6 in 1.6 in 12.3 oz 410 n Jan 2015 399- i Fujifilm X-A2
Fujifilm X-T10« » 4.6 in 3.3 in 1.6 in 13.4 oz 350 n May 2015 799- i Fujifilm X-T10
Fujifilm X-A1« » 4.6 in 2.6 in 1.5 in 11.6 oz 350 n Sep 2013 399- i Fujifilm X-A1
Fujifilm X-E2« » 5.1 in 3.0 in 1.5 in 12.3 oz 350 n Oct 2013 999- i Fujifilm X-E2
Fujifilm X-E1« » 5.1 in 3.0 in 1.5 in 12.3 oz 350 n Sep 2012 999- i Fujifilm X-E1
Fujifilm X-Pro1« » 5.5 in 3.2 in 1.7 in 15.9 oz 300 n Jan 2012 1,699- i Fujifilm X-Pro1
Sony NEX-5R« » 4.4 in 2.3 in 1.5 in 9.7 oz 330 n Aug 2012 749- i Sony NEX-5R
Sony NEX-F3« » 4.6 in 2.6 in 1.7 in 11.1 oz 470 n May 2012 599- i Sony NEX-F3

The camera’s price is obviously a critical decision-making factor. The retail prices at the time of the camera’s release place the model in the market relative to other models in the producer’s line-up and the competition. The X-A3 was launched at a markedly lower price (by 43 percent) than the X-M1, which puts it into a different market segment. Normally, street prices remain initially close to the MSRP, but after a couple of months, the first discounts appear. Later in the product cycle and, in particular, when the replacement model is about to appear, further discounting and stock clearance sales often push the camera price considerably down.

 

Sensor comparison: Fujifilm X-M1 vs Fujifilm X-A3

The size of the imaging sensor is a crucial determinant of image quality. All other things equal, a large sensor will have larger individual pixel-units that offer better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color-depth than smaller pixels in a sensor of the same technological generation. Further, a large sensor camera will give the photographer additional creative options when using shallow depth-of-field to isolate a subject from its background. On the downside, larger sensors are more costly to manufacture and tend to lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.

Both cameras under consideration feature an APS-C sensor, but their sensors differ slightly in size. They nevertheless have the same format factor of 1.5. Both cameras have a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 3:2.

Technology-wise, both cameras are equipped with CMOS (Complementary Metal–Oxide–Semiconductor) sensors.

Fujifilm X-M1 and Fujifilm X-A3 sensor measures

With 24MP, the X-A3 offers a higher resolution than the X-M1 (16MP), but the X-A3 has smaller individual pixels (pixel pitch of 3.92μm versus 4.80μm for the X-M1). Yet, the X-A3 is a much more recent model (by 3 years and 2 months) than the X-M1, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixel-units. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the X-M1 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.

X-M1 versus X-A3 MP

Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for many cameras. This service is based on lab testing and assigns an overall score to each camera sensor, as well as ratings for dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), color depth ("DXO Portrait"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"). The following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.

Sensor Characteristics
  Camera
Model
Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
Camera
Model
Fujifilm X-M1» APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/30p----Fujifilm X-M1
Fujifilm X-A3« APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p----Fujifilm X-A3
Fujifilm X-E3« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40004K/30p----Fujifilm X-E3
Fujifilm X-T20« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40004K/30p----Fujifilm X-T20
Fujifilm X-A10« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/30p----Fujifilm X-A10
Fujifilm X-E2S« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/60p----Fujifilm X-E2S
Fujifilm X-A2« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/30p----Fujifilm X-A2
Fujifilm X-T10« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/60p----Fujifilm X-T10
Fujifilm X-A1« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/30p----Fujifilm X-A1
Fujifilm X-E2« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/60p----Fujifilm X-E2
Fujifilm X-E1« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/24p----Fujifilm X-E1
Fujifilm X-Pro1« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/24p----Fujifilm X-Pro1
Sony NEX-5R« » APS-C 16.0 4912 32641080/60i23.713.191078Sony NEX-5R
Sony NEX-F3« » APS-C 16.0 4912 32641080/60i22.712.3111473Sony NEX-F3

Many modern cameras cannot only take still pictures, but also record videos. Both cameras under consideration have a sensor with sufficiently fast read-out times for moving pictures, but the X-A3 provides a faster frame rate than the X-M1. It can shoot movie footage at 1080/60p, while the X-M1 is limited to 1080/30p.

 

Feature comparison: Fujifilm X-M1 vs Fujifilm X-A3

Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The X-M1 and the X-A3 are similar in the sense that neither of the two has a viewfinder. The images are, thus, framed using live view on the rear LCD. The table below summarizes some of the other core capabilities of the Fujifilm X-M1 and Fujifilm X-A3 in connection with corresponding information for a sample of similar cameras. If needed, the dpreview camera hub, for example, contains further detail on the cameras' specs.

Core Features
  Camera
Model
Viewfinder
(Type or
'000 dots)
Control
Panel
(yes/no)
LCD
Size
(inch)
LCD
Resolution
('000 dots)
LCD
Attach-
ment
Touch
Screen
(yes/no)
Shutter
speed
(1/sec)
Shutter
flaps
(1/sec)
Build-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Build-in
Image
Stab
Camera
Model
Fujifilm X-M1»- n 3.0 920 tilting n 4000 5.6 Y n Fujifilm X-M1
Fujifilm X-A3«- n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 4000 6.0 Y n Fujifilm X-A3
Fujifilm X-E3« »2360 n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 4000 8.0 n n Fujifilm X-E3
Fujifilm X-T20« »2360 n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 4000 8.0 Y n Fujifilm X-T20
Fujifilm X-A10« »- n 3.0 1040 tilting n 4000 6.0 Y n Fujifilm X-A10
Fujifilm X-E2S« »2360 n 3.0 1040 fixed n 4000 7.0 Y n Fujifilm X-E2S
Fujifilm X-A2« »- n 3.0 920 tilting n 4000 5.6 Y n Fujifilm X-A2
Fujifilm X-T10« »2360 n 3.0 920 tilting n 4000 8.0 Y n Fujifilm X-T10
Fujifilm X-A1« »- n 3.0 920 tilting n 4000 5.6 Y n Fujifilm X-A1
Fujifilm X-E2« »2360 n 3.0 1040 fixed n 4000 7.0 Y n Fujifilm X-E2
Fujifilm X-E1« »2360 n 2.8 460 fixed n 4000 6.0 Y n Fujifilm X-E1
Fujifilm X-Pro1« »1440 n 3.0 1230 fixed n 4000 6.0 n n Fujifilm X-Pro1
Sony NEX-5R« »- n 3.0 920 tilting Y 4000 10.0 n n Sony NEX-5R
Sony NEX-F3« »- n 3.0 920 tilting n 4000 5.5 Y n Sony NEX-F3

One differentiating feature between the two cameras concerns the touch sensitivity of the rear screen. The X-A3 has a touchscreen, while the X-M1 has a conventional panel. Touch control can be particularly helpful, for example, for setting the focus point.

Both the X-M1 and the X-A3 write their imaging data to SDXC cards.

Input-Output Connections
  Camera
Model
Hotshoe
Port
Internal
Microphone
Internal
Speaker
Microphone
Port
Headphone
Port
HDMI
Port
USB
Type
WiFi
Support
NFC
Support
Bluetooth
Support
Camera
Model
Fujifilm X-M1»Ystereomono--mini2.0Y--Fujifilm X-M1
Fujifilm X-A3«Ystereomono--micro2.0Y--Fujifilm X-A3
Fujifilm X-E3« »YstereomonoY-micro2.0Y-YFujifilm X-E3
Fujifilm X-T20« »YstereomonoY-micro2.0Y--Fujifilm X-T20
Fujifilm X-A10« »-stereomono--mini2.0Y--Fujifilm X-A10
Fujifilm X-E2S« »YstereomonoY-micro2.0Y--Fujifilm X-E2S
Fujifilm X-A2« »Ystereomono--mini2.0Y--Fujifilm X-A2
Fujifilm X-T10« »YstereomonoY-micro2.0Y--Fujifilm X-T10
Fujifilm X-A1« »Ystereomono--mini2.0Y--Fujifilm X-A1
Fujifilm X-E2« »YstereomonoY-micro2.0Y--Fujifilm X-E2
Fujifilm X-E1« »YstereomonoY-mini2.0---Fujifilm X-E1
Fujifilm X-Pro1« »Ystereomono--mini2.0---Fujifilm X-Pro1
Sony NEX-5R« »Ystereomono--mini2.0Y--Sony NEX-5R
Sony NEX-F3« »Ystereomono--mini2.0---Sony NEX-F3

Both the X-M1 and the X-A3 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The X-A3 was replaced by the Fujifilm X-A5, while the X-M1 does not have a direct successor.

Review summary: Fujifilm X-M1 vs Fujifilm X-A3

So what is the bottom line? Is there a clear favorite between the Fujifilm X-M1 and the Fujifilm X-A3? A synthesis of the relative strong points of each of the models is listed below.


Advantages of the Fujifilm X-M1:

  • Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in June 2013).


Reasons to prefer the Fujifilm X-A3:

  • More detail: Has more megapixels (24 vs 16MP), which boosts linear resolution by 23%.
  • Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
  • Better video: Provides higher movie framerates (1080/60p versus 1080/30p).
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1040k vs 920k dots).
  • Fewer buttons to press: Has a touchscreen to facilitate handling and shooting adjustments.
  • Longer lasting: Gets more shots (410 versus 350) out of a single battery charge.
  • More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (43 percent cheaper at launch).
  • More modern: Reflects 3 years and 2 months of technical progress since the X-M1 launch.

If the count of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a measure, the X-A3 is the clear winner of the contest (8 : 2 points). However, the pertinence of the various camera strengths will differ across photographers, so that you might want to weigh individual camera traits according to their importance for your own imaging needs before making a camera decision.

X-M1 02:08 X-A3

In any case, while the specs-based evaluation of cameras is instructive in revealing their potential as photographic tools, it remains incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the X-M1 or the X-A3 handle or perform in practice. At times, user reviews, such as those published at amazon, address these issues in a useful manner, but such feedback is on many occasions incomplete, inconsistent, and unreliable. This is why hands-on reviews by experts are important. The table below summarizes the assessments of some of the best known camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, photographyblog). You can find the full text of the reviews by clicking on the site logo in the table header.

Review Scores
  Camera
Model
cameralabs dpreview ephotozine imaging-resource photographyblog Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
Fujifilm X-M1»Rec77/1004.5/5-4.5/5 Jun 2013 699- i Fujifilm X-M1
Fujifilm X-A3«-74/1004.5/5-4/5 Aug 2016 399- i Fujifilm X-A3
Fujifilm X-E3« »Rec84/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Sep 2017 899 i i Fujifilm X-E3
Fujifilm X-T20« »HiRec82/1005/5-4.5/5 Jan 2017 899 i i Fujifilm X-T20
Fujifilm X-A10« »--4/5-4/5 Dec 2016 399- i Fujifilm X-A10
Fujifilm X-E2S« »-77/1004.5/5-4.5/5 Jan 2016 699- i Fujifilm X-E2S
Fujifilm X-A2« »--4.5/54/54.5/5 Jan 2015 399- i Fujifilm X-A2
Fujifilm X-T10« »HiRec80/1005/54/55/5 May 2015 799- i Fujifilm X-T10
Fujifilm X-A1« »--4.5/5-4.5/5 Sep 2013 399- i Fujifilm X-A1
Fujifilm X-E2« »-80/1004.5/5-5/5 Oct 2013 999- i Fujifilm X-E2
Fujifilm X-E1« »HiRec79/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Sep 2012 999- i Fujifilm X-E1
Fujifilm X-Pro1« »HiRec79/1004.5/54/54.5/5 Jan 2012 1,699- i Fujifilm X-Pro1
Sony NEX-5R« »--4.5/5-4.5/5 Aug 2012 749- i Sony NEX-5R
Sony NEX-F3« »-74/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 May 2012 599- i Sony NEX-F3

The review scores listed above should be treated with care, though. The ratings were established in reference to similarly priced cameras that were available in the market at the time of the review. A score, therefore, has to be seen in close connection to the price and market introduction time of the camera, and comparisons of ratings among very different cameras or across long time periods have little meaning. Also, kindly note that some of the listed sites have over time developped their review approaches and their reporting style.

 

Other camera comparisons

Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? If you would like to see a different side-by-side camera review, just make a corresponding selection in the search boxes below. An an alternative, you can also directly jump to any one of the listed comparisons that were previously generated by the CAM-parator tool. If you cannot find the camera you are interested in, kindly get in touch, and I will try to update the database with the necessary infos.

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